New fears raised over plans for 'temporary' homeless hostel

FRESH concerns have been raised over plans for a temporary homeless hostel in the West End.

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Local residents have been protesting against the Burnbank House scheme since the plans were first unveiled by the council        Picture: Mark Mainz
Local residents have been protesting against the Burnbank House scheme since the plans were first unveiled by the council Picture: Mark Mainz

Campaigners fear Burnbank House will be used for more than the agreed two year period after being unable to find a planning application for a permanent facility.

As reported in the Evening Times, the controversial plans will see a former elderly care home turned into a hostel for up to 40 men by October this year.

The council say Burnbank House is only a temporary measure, with two permanent purpose-built centres planned elsewhere in the city.

The first is to be l ocated on Rodney Street, close to Possil Road, at the site of an former travellers' park.

However, as yet there have been no planning applications submitted for the new site, which is supposed to be completed by April 2016.

Dr Stephen Turner, who is part of the Burnbank Action Group, said: "The new place has not a single line of a planning application, it hasn't gone through the earliest stages.

"No planning comes in overnight and no foundations have been laid for what is supposed to be a state-of-the-art building.

"If they are poor at planning the Rodney Street site, have they also been poor at planning for Burnbank House?"

He fears that use of Burnbank House is going to extend to "three years and then four years or more."

Locals' concerns were discussed at a community council meeting on Monday.

A city council spokesman said: "A planning application for a new homeless unit in the north of the city will be lodged in the near future.

"It is anticipated the new home will be operational by April 2016, with the council committed to ceasing use of Burnbank House no later than October 2016.

"Work to extend the availability of temporary homeless accommodation is continuing on a number of fronts."

hannah.rodger@ eveningtimes.co.uk

Local government

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